I needed a bit longer rest than I had imagined. After MTB challenge, which I wrote about in my previous post, I was sent for an MRI of my knee and hamstring, it showed both good and bad news. My knee was just swollen and looked good on the inside, but my left hamstring was completely off. It was 2 of the 3 muscles that make up the hamstring which had been retracted from its attachment point and fallen 7,6 cm down the leg. Dr Killops, who took care of me at the race, immediately booked an appointment with Dr Thane Munting for Monday morning at 7am, I was told not to eat or drink from midnight so that I would be prepared for an operation already the same day. We went to Christian Barnards memorial hospital to see Dr Munting and it was nothing to discuss, just for him to explain how he would do the operation. I got admitted to the hospital and my operation was at 14.30. The surgery took longer than planned since the head of the tendon had fallen further down the leg and the doctor struggled to find it. Once finding the tendon he took the muscle out of the leg to saw it together and placing 3 anchors on the pelvis bone so there was something to attach the tendon and muscle in. It was a big and relatively complicated surgery and the rehabilitation time back to top level sport is long.
I first have to use crutches and a knee brace for 6 weeks. The brace is to stop the hamstring from stretching and I am not allowed to put any weight on the leg. After 6 weeks the rehab will start and it will be hard work to get muscles and mobility back. The prognoses is 3 months before I am back on a bike and 6 months before I am racing again. This will of course depend on how everything is going. I believe that the process will be quicker if the motivation is high.
It was a very tough call to make to tell Esther that I can not do Epic. There has been a lot of tears in the last 10 days since the operation. I've been through many injuries in the past and will definitely get through this one too, but it does not make things easier right now. I would like to thank all of you for all kind, encouraging and motivating messages, I have read and appreciated every message!
In the middle of all of this, I got some good news when I received the award "The Cyclist of the Year" from the Swedish Cycling Federation! Thank you very much to everyone who voted for me!